USMNT center back Chris Richards continues his Premier League rise after being voted Crystal Palace’s Player of the Month for January
Up-and-coming United States center back Chris Richards has continued his rapid rise in the Premier League by picking up Crystal Palace’s Player of the Month award for January.
Richards, 22, joined the Eagles in the summer of 2022 but had struggled to nail down a starting spot in the first half of this season.
He also missed the World Cup in Qatar through injury, and looked to be down the pecking order in south London until the injury of Joachim Andersen earlier this month.
Chris Richards (right) walks off the field after Crystal Palace’s draw against Manchester United
Richards (right) has shone for the Eagles after earning himself a spot in the starting XI
Richards was then given a chance to prove himself at the heart of the defense and quickly shone, starting against Manchester United and Newcastle in Palace’s last two games.
Despite only appearing in two of the team’s five games, he has been awarded Player of the Month, playing 90 minutes in both of the games – which ended in draws.
Speaking to Palace TV about the award, he said: ‘My first two starts being this month, it means a lot for the fans to vote me Player of the Month.
‘I was a bit nervous having my first start against a team like Man Utd in the form they are in, but I think I did really well and held my own.
Richards will now hope his fine club form can help him earn a place in the USMNT starting XI
‘It’s good to learn from [Marc Guehi], even though we’re the same age it feels like he has a lot of experience under his belt. It is good to learn from him and to play alongside him and to merge our relationship.
‘[The Premier League is] competitive. Every team has top players, bottom of league or top. It is just about bringing our A game every time and being focused for 90-plus [minutes].’
Richards earned 53.9 percent of the vote, romping to victory ahead of Michael Olise – despite the fellow youngster’s last-minute equalizer against United.
The Alabama-born defender will now hope that he can keep his place in the Palace defense and earn a starting spot for the USMNT in the coming months.
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